Five Artists Under 25: Making a Case for the City of Trees 

More young artists are choosing to stay in Boise rather than heading to the big city

Page 5 of 5

click to enlarge Daniel Kerr and Jake Warnock - LAURIE PEARMAN

Daniel Kerr & Jake Warnock

Name: Daniel Kerr

Age: 24

Discipline: Music

Day Job: Server/chef at Bacon

Hometown: Pocatello

Years in Boise: Five

Name: Jake Warnock

Age: 23

Discipline: Music

Day Job: Barista at Crux

Hometown: Pocatello

Years in Boise: Five

Daniel Kerr and Jake Warnock are Atomic Mama, a band that plays "rock 'n' roll for the future." The two played in bands together during their youth and when they graduated high school, they went their separate ways, each seeking to break into the music scene of a bigger city. Kerr went to Portland, Ore., and Warnock moved to Phoenix.

A year into their respective adventures, the two were talking on the phone and decided to come back to Idaho.

"[We] realized that we hadn't met the kind of people we wanted to play music with," Kerr said.

"We wanted to rehearse and record and have a place to put all our stuff, so we just went out to Garden City and found a big warehouse for cheap," he said. "It's that kind of stuff that's hard to do in other places."

"I think people move to big cities with all these stars in their eyes, but it takes a real long time to figure it out if you don't have a foundation there," said Warnock. "We have a pretty solid foundation, we just needed to figure out the right kind of venue for it."

That venue was Boise.

"There's a lot of response to the creative things because the people are hungrier here than they are in a lot of other places," said Warnock. "There's not nearly so many jaded [people]--everyone's really cool in an innocent sense of cool instead of so fucking cool that nothing's really cool at all. You know, not cold. ... The people here are really supportive of what we do and that's a beautiful thing. It makes it a lot easier to get up in the morning."

Kerr and Warnock find Boise's isolation helpful in shaping creative pursuits, or rather, in not shaping them.

"It's kind of nice being able to separate yourself ... and feel like you're an Idaho boy just playing whatever comes to mind and comes to heart," said Kerr. "I'd like to keep that as long as we can before we really need to venture out."

"You get into these cliques in bigger places," Warnock added. "I think a lot of bands get sucked into having the exact same sound. ... We have so many influences and so much love for so many different types of music. We want to play all of it."

"We definitely don't want to shut any of it out," said Kerr. "We wanna be able to draw on whatever we wanna draw on."

"There's more of a sense of a creative freedom here," said Warnock. "The beautiful thing about music is that it takes you all over the world if you let it and cultivate it enough to let it. Boise has been a great home base. ... I think that anywhere we go in the entire world, if we ever move, we still would have a really huge part of Boise in our hearts."

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